BY ANADOLU AGENCY
JERUSALEM MID-EAST FEB 28, 2021
Defence Minister Benny Gantz (C), the leader of the Kahol Lavan (Blue and White) party, speaks during a visit to the Druze village of Julis, northern Israel, Feb. 23, 2021.
Israeli Defense Minister Benny Gantz met secretly with Jordan’s King Abdullah II, Israeli newspaper Yedioth Ahronoth reported on Sunday.
The daily said the meeting took place in Jordan but did not specify the precise date of the meeting.
Gantz, who is leading the Blue and White party in the upcoming Israeli elections, told his party members earlier that he was conducting secret meetings with top Jordanian officials.
Gantz also criticized Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s relationship with Amman, accusing him of harming Israel’s relations with Jordan.
“I think Jordan is a great asset to Israel, and I think that our relationship with Jordan could be 1,000 times better. Unfortunately, Netanyahu is an unwanted figure in Jordan, and his presence harms” the two countries’ relations, Gantz said.
The Jordanian authorities have yet to comment on the Israeli media report.
According to Yedioth Ahronoth, Israeli Foreign Minister Gabi Ashkenazi also met twice with his Jordanian counterpart Ayman al-Safadi in the past few months and discussed possible joint projects.
Jordan and Israel share their longest borders with each other and they signed a peace agreement in 1994 in which Jordan became the second Arab country to establish official ties with Israel following Egypt, which signed its peace agreement with Israel in 1979.